Galley Wench Tales

Exploring the world through the people we meet
and the food they eat.

Wayne crossing Marshall Park’s charming stone bridge

After a long stretch of gray skies, getting out on a sunny Sunday was irresistible. We really wanted to head to the beach, but read reports that with all the coronavirus concerns, Oregon coastal towns placed their unwelcome mat out. State parks and many reserves were also closed.

Marshall Park bridge, replaced in 2019.

City, metro and county parks were still cleared for amblers. We’d never heard of Marshall Park before, and its stone bridge photo charmed me enough to want to see it. The drive was less than 20 minutes from our marina into Portland’s West hills area.

Verdant canyon, Marshall Park.

In the late 1940s, F. C. and his wife Adele Marshall donated “a charming little park which he would like to dedicate without too much fuss to the recreational use of the public.” With trails, picnic tables, and playgrounds, today the park spans over 26 acres.

Marshall Park’s supposedly closed playground.

While the trails were open, the playground was closed—in theory. Bicycles also weren’t allowed, but a cyclist passed us on the trail. Then again, the prevailing philosophy is to avoid all unnecessary travel, and we were here.

Salmonberry blossom.

Alltrails warned Marshall Park would be muddy, but a great place for wildflowers. 

Yellow violets.

We’d had our share of showers, but I was rarin’ for wildflowers, even if the trails were muddy (and they definitely were muddy).


Seeing the trillium in bloom is a spring rite of passage in the Pacific Northwest. Marshall Park delivered.

Trilliums fading.

Trillium blossoms start out a pristine white, fading to pink and even sometimes a muted red. If I could choose, give me a pretty pink pallor like the trilliums’ for my final goodbye.

Fig buttercups, aka lesser celandine (thanks Keith Morgan for the i.d.). According to Wikipedia,
“regarded as many as a harbinger of spring.”

Marshall Park is surrounded by residential areas. This upscale neighborhood treehouse brought back memories of a simpler time, of the treehouse my dad built when my brother and me were kids. Our treehouse was a much simpler affair than this one; a basic platform on stilts with a railing and a flat roof, accessed by a ladder.

Treehouse, adjacent to Marshall Park

Birdsong, the babble of Tryon Creek, the crack of a hammer and buzz of a saw made up Marshall Park’s soundscape. Exactly what you’d expect for a pocket paradise park tucked in the canyon surrounded by neighborhoods.

Vibrant green moss coated these otherwise-naked tree branches.

This neighborhood magnolia tree between two park entrances was past its prime but smelled divine.


For an easy walk and a change of pace from my usual neighborhood loop or our almost as frequent trips to Vancouver Washington parks and riverwalks, Marshall Park offered a pleasant outdoor diversion on a sunny spring day.

Location Location

Sailboats and rainbows on Hayden Island, Portland, Oregon.

Until June, we’re roosted on Hayden Island, Portland Oregon. We are incredibly grateful we slipped out in February for our two-week road trip, a sun break to the Southern tip of California. I still have some catch-up posts of those highlights.